Togo: Statement on Expulsion of NDI Staff from Togo and Restrictions on Election Monitoring

Togo's President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe arrives at the 2019 Russia-Africa Summit in Sochi, Russia, 23 October 2019.
press release

The National Democratic Institute (NDI) is deeply concerned by the government of Togo’s expulsion of three NDI employees from the country.  The NDI employees traveled to Togo transparently and in compliance with the country’s immigration laws to provide technical assistance to a local, non-partisan civil society coalition that intended to monitor the February 22 presidential election. Togo’s National Independent Election Commission (CENI) accredited the group’s election observation mission in January. On February 18, Togolese authorities revoked the accreditation without warning

“We are deeply troubled by the Togolese government’s actions to restrict non-partisan election monitoring,” said NDI President Derek Mitchell. “NDI has worked to support elections in more than 150 countries since its founding in 1983. Despite the government’s actions, we remain steadfast in our commitment to support the Togolese people’s desire for democracy, and ability to monitor their elections in accordance with internationally recognized principles of transparency.”

NDI is a non-profit, non-partisan, non-governmental organization dedicated to supporting and strengthening democratic institutions worldwide through citizen participation, transparency, and accountability in government.

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